Yesterday I was over at Oakland Family Services in Pontiac to participate in a press conference in my role as an Executive Member of Fight Crime, Invest in Kids. The purpose of the press conference was to bring attention to a new report that was just released: “HIgh Quality Early Care and Education: A Key to Reducing Future Crime in Michigan.” Maybe you heard me on WWJ radio talking about this very thing.
Law enforcement agencies in Michigan spend tremendous amounts of public money to find and prosecute law breakers. Doesn’t it make sense to stop it before it starts? Shouldn’t our focus be on keeping people out of this tremendously expensive and non productive system? I can tell you that the vast majority of people who commit crime don’t have education and life skills to keep and maintain a job and live a productive life. Helping our children improve their education is in everyone’s best interests.
High quality preschool is the key–not child warehousing. The preschools should include:
- A safe and developmentally appropriate environment
- Adequate Staffing
- Additional Family support
Governor Snyder has proposed $65 million dollars in his budget for FY 2014 and FY 2015 to serve 30,000 at risk 4 year olds so that they can learn better, get along better, graduate on schedule, earn more and be less likely to turn to crime. What could be a better investment of our public money?
How can you help? Join the Sandbox Party–a non-partisan group of people interested in improving our communities through high quality preschool education.
And the best part? We got to read to a classroom of 3 and 4 year olds! I think we were as excited to see them as they were to see us!